Dental hygiene is a very important aspect of a baby's health. Many parents, however, neglect the tooth of the child, starting from the false assumption that the little ones do not need to take care of their teeth, because it is a temporary dentition. Proper oral hygiene, from the first years of life, can save the child from complications at maturity, in addition, it has a defining role in terms of obtaining a perfect smile at maturity.
When to start dental hygiene in children
Proper care of the oral cavity and teeth should start early, even before the appearance of the first milk teeth. Until the temporary tooth erupts, the baby's mouth most often comes into contact only with breast milk or milk formula. Both breast milk and most milk formulas contain lactose, a natural milk sugar that serves as a nutritious substrate for bacteria in the oral cavity. Following the use of lactose by bacteria, it results in acids that affect the mucosa of the mouth and later the teeth. So it is good that every day, even before the first teeth appear, the mouth cavity is performed.
At first it is made quite simple, by gently wiping the gums and the inside of the cheeks with a piece of sterile gauze wrapped on your finger, in the evening, at the bath. It is very important that the little one gets used to the gesture of mouth cleaning early. Immediately he will recognize and accept this step as part of the daily routine, and will be prepared for subsequent stages of tooth and mouth care.
The first teeth, or milk teeth, begin to appear between the ages of 3 and 12 months, but most often around the age of 6 months. It is a very important moment in the life of the little one, and the care of these first teeth should not be delayed. Immediately after the eruption is over and the baby no longer feels pain or discomfort when reaching that area, it is good to start brushing his teeth twice a day, especially if the little one receives diversified food. The cleaning can still be done with a piece of sterile gauze wrapped around the finger and gentle cleaning of the teeth, or by using special devices such as textile or silicone fingers, or even the toothbrush specially designed for the first teeth. It is not necessary to use toothpaste at this age. However, if you want to use it, it must be specially designed for the baby's age.
When milk caries appear in children
Prolonged exposure of teeth to liquids containing sugar (breast milk or milk formula, sweetened tea, fruit juice) leads to the appearance of milk caries, due to the acids released by the bacteria in the mouth. Leaving the little one in the crib or other spaces should be avoided, with a bottle with such liquids, especially during sleep. In addition to sweet food and flour (bread, pasta, muffins), it contributes to the appearance of caries.
Since the beginning of the diversification of children, care must be taken in the number of portions and the prolonged exposure to these foods. Also, for babies fed with the bottle or those who receive the pacifier, contact between the nipple of the bottle or the pacifier with the mouth, the hand of the parent or other surfaces is forbidden.
The first steps to a healthy tooth
The first visit to the dentist is best to take no more than 6 months from the eruption of the first tooth or up to the age of 1 year. This is a routine check to assess the condition of the tooth, if it has appeared, the general state of the oral cavity, the way the baby interacts with the food (possible chewing problems) and the way the small bite - the occlusion.
If you notice whitish or dark spots on the baby's teeth, until the time of the first check, it is advisable to contact a pediatric dentist as soon as possible. These color changes may be early signs of caries. If caries appear and are not treated, they can lead to infections of the teeth, early loss of affected milk teeth, which can have a significant impact on the evolution of permanent dentition.
The pedodontic doctor, the ally of children against caries
After your first visit to your pediatrician, check regularly if there are discoloration in your teeth. Starting with the age of 2 years, you can start using fluorinated toothpaste specially designed for children. Do not forget to check the dentist periodically, 2 times a year. Until the age of 3 years it is good to disassociate the little one from the pacifier or the sucking of the finger, if any.
In terms of fluoride use, the amount of fluoride in the body for children is 25 milligrams per day. Fluoride strengthens tooth enamel and protects teeth against cavities. In addition to using a fluoride toothpaste, you can opt for fluoride as a dietary supplement. This decision is one with an impact on the health of the little one and therefore it needs to be taken with the opinion of the pediatrician or the pediatric dentist.
Recommended products for children's dental hygiene
As for baby teeth care products, there are toothbrushes for all age categories, starting with "toothbrushes" without bristles, meant to be used for gum massage before milk teeth appear.
Then follow those for the first teeth, along with silicone fingers with bristles or antibacterial fingers from textile material. The latter are used on average a month, depending on the manufacturer's recommendations. For brushes with brushes, they will change at the first signs of deterioration. By the age of 18-24 months, brushing your teeth and cleaning your mouth with water is sufficient. Then you can start using specially designed toothpaste for each age group. By the age of 2 years, the amount of pasta should be very small, as much as the brush should eat. Between the ages of 2 and 5 years, each brushing requires a quantity of paste as a pea grain. After 5 years, apply the toothpaste on the entire length of the brushes. It is not necessary or recommended to use other care products, such as dental floss or mouth water in this age group.
Dear parents, do not forget that the beauty of the smile depends on a beautiful and healthy tooth!
Tags Caries milk teeth Milk teeth Baby teeth care